Camp Crosses the Finish Line
Today, the Packers held their last training camp / preseason practice. It's not near the cause for celebration it once was, and that's a good thing. Back in the day of double sessions in pads and daily grass drills, training camp was a survival test. Your focus was on just that, surviving, as opposed to improving as a football player. Today, with single practices and more enlightened approaches to the rough stuff, a player can focus on becoming a better football player from Day 1. It's a much smarter way of doing things. Like a lot of things in football, they're not doing it like we did it, they're doing it better.
Said practice was sans pads or shells, helmets only, so the work was more mental than physical.
-The Return of Ryan Taylor. He was out with a chest injury and that left the Packers with just 2 healthy tight ends available for practice, Jermichael Finley and Brandon Bostick. Taylor's a maybe for the Chiefs.
-Brad Jones was working at inside LB. Jamari Lattimore and Robert Francois being out with injuries had a lot to do with that but Jones also worked inside during the off season. The ability to play outside and inside, and special teams, could help Jones' cause when it comes to making the final roster.
-A 2-minute drill started with B.J. Coleman hitting Bostick over the middle and behind the coverage of Jerron McMillian. The rookie safety is getting a look as the next man in when Charles Woodson moves up to the slot and he'll have to do better against K.C.
-Ryan Pickett returned to practice. On Friday, Mike McCarthy said he'd be hard pressed to make the Chiefs game due to a calf injury. 12 year vet beating the injury clock for a training camp practice. Real good player, great leader, just a great guy.
-Not a strong day for Sam Shields. Coleman and Jarrett Boykin teamed up to beat him deep and later Aaron Rodgers and Jordy Nelson got him on one of those back shoulder fades. Shields is part of a serious competition for the playing time at the corner opposite Tramon Williams.
-Good Omen? Final play of the final practice of the preseason, Rodgers to Finley who made a diving catch for a touchdown.